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Sorcerer at GenCon

Started by Ron Edwards, August 06, 2001, 11:19:00 AM

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Ron Edwards


Back from GenCon ... and into the first actual vacation time I've had in a year.

I want to thank (in no particular order): Mike Holmes, Sean Wipfli, Terry Gant, Mario Bonassin, Clinton R. Nixon, Jared Sorensen, Paul Czege, Tom whose last name I forgot, Mike Gentry, John B, Jurgen whose last name I forgot, Scott Knipe, Josh Neff, Raven, and John Wick. The booth and hotel room were amazing places due to their help and support.

It's strange to come back to the Forge and be able to put faces and mannerisms on the names. I like it.

So! Anyone who was there - tell everyone else how it was.


joshua neff

QuoteIt's strange to come back to the Forge and be able to put faces and mannerisms on the names. I like it.

Yeah, it's definitely weird.

Okay, so watching Ron get all excited about Sorcerer & using that excitement to sell his game was a blast. ("Ooh,you gave a double glance. Come on over, take a look!") Getting to share my own enthusiasm was also great. & having Dav, Jason Blair, & The Wick hanging around the booth gave the whole thing a feeling of an "indie community", which was really great.

Now I'm waiting for all those people who bought Sorcerer over the weekend to start posting on here. Let's get some fresh blood.

I meant that figuratively, of course.

"You can't ignore a rain of toads!"--Mike Holmes


What can I say?  Hobnobbing with all of the Forge folks at the Sorceror booth was far and away the coolest gaming-related experience I've ever had (perhaps equalled only by playing Primeval with John).  I sucked at selling Sorceror, but I ran a couple of rocking Demos that hopefully made up for any inadequacies I may have had as a salesman.  It was a great few days, and for the first time ever I didn't feel burned out as I drove away from Milwaukee.  In fact, there was a  distinct feeling of disappointment, as I had not accomplished half the things I had hoped to.

The best part, of course, was getting to meet everyone.  Ron, Clinton, Jared, Sean, Josh, Mike, Raven, Mario, about a group with open arms.  As a person who typically has trouble making good first impressions, I felt absolutely no obligation to impress or otherwise justify my inclusion in the group (the one exception to that is Ron; his amazing generosity absolutely demanded that I justify my presence there, and hopefully I did). :smile:  

There was a real feeling of community at the Sorceror table, not just among those of us who were asked to be there, but among those who just sort of showed up and hung out.  It was incredible to behold.

A couple of personal notes, to hopefully address those things I didn't accomplish while at the Con:

Ron: Playing SOAP with you and the guys was great, but it wasn't nearly the Edwards fix I needed.  I want very badly to shoot the shit about Sorceror and some different game ideas I have, as well as to hear your suggestions about how I can move my individaul game sessions to the next level.  It was a busy four days and maybe GenCon wasn't the place for that.  Now that it's over, maybe we can rectify that.

Jared: The most disappointing thing about the Con, for me, was our failure to hook up for an InSpectres games.  For that I apologize - I sincerely didn't mean to leave you hanging.  I'd love to hear how it went from those who played; I've played my own variants of InSpectres more than once, and they've always been a riot.

I'll think of more later, but for now I just want to say thanks to everyone that was there.  It was a time I'll not soon forget.

Take care,
Scott Knipe

Uncle Dark

Damn.  Wish I'd been there.  I haven't seen Josh in years...:sad:

Unfortunately, my current obligations leave me pretty much bound to the Bay Area (not a bad dungoen, as dungeons go) for the next several months.  Anybody heading west before year's end or spring thaw?

Reality is what you can get away with.


Hi all

I enjoyed meeting everyone Ron has talked so much about. Even though I only played 4 games all weekend it was still one of the funnest GenCons I've been to, and I've been to 11 of them.  I really enjoyed playing in Jareds InSpectres games, I think it has a lot of potential(he should start selling it).  I will have to play catch up and start creating my own games now.


Ron Edwards

Everyone welcome Mario, Sorcerer veteran and my "drummer," to use the band metaphor.

Here are some tidbits of information for us all to dwell on.

- Mike Gentry got a signature from Billy Dee Williams for his wife.
- Josh Neff has really cute jammies.
- Jared Sorensen is all tough-looking and spiked hair and that, but his phone-voice back home is reeeeal sweet and tender (imagine five guys trying not to guffaw when we heard it).
- Scott Knipe's nickname "Moose" is not inappropriate; the man is enormous (not in that horrifying GenCon way either, I mean just big & tall).
- Paul Czege is polite and a little hesitant in person, not Jesuitical and razor-to-throat like his posts on-line.
- Raven masses about two-thirds my body mass and maybe ONE-third of Scott's, but he out-partied every single one of us, every single night.
- And on a related note, I was too wiped out every night to do anything but fall in a heap and maybe hold feeble attempts at conversation.


Jared A. Sorensen

Re: Raven.
What's that line? "Skinny guys fight till they're burger?"

Nice meeting everyone, as usual. :smile:

- J
jared a. sorensen /

joshua neff

Let me tell you, the ladies LOVE my cute jammies.

If anyone who couldn't be there wants to know what Ron's like up close & personal, go to Mike Gentry's website & read his GenCon memoirs. He nails Ron to a T.

"You can't ignore a rain of toads!"--Mike Holmes

Uncle Dark

On 2001-08-07 23:52, joshua neff wrote:

He nails Ron to a T.

OK, guys, I think we're taking that Cult of Ron thing to an unhealthy extreme :smile:.

Reality is what you can get away with.

Ferry Bazelmans

I don't know if you ever read the forums at RPGnet, but this showed up. I think you made a good impression there... *smile*

My friend Aaron and I were at GenCon Saturday - Aaron had never been to it before, and I'd been to quite a few so I was his guide.

The reason we came to the con was the main hall - we wanted to see all the goodies and spend our money on cool stuff. When the gate of the hall opened we were in the initial rush of mad gamers that day so we headed off to the far right side and began working our way across the hall, soaking in all the cool stuff, and making a few purchases here and there.

Both Aaron and I work in a sales environment so we were on the lookout for a good sales pitch. Someone to really, sell us a game, CD, dice or minis.

A good sales pitch not only tries to get you to buy the product, but has answers to you questions and tells you more than the blurb on the front and back covers do. I can read any flyer or cover blurb - I want real, honest information from a person who knows their product and can answer my questions. I was looking for that person this year.

There were no "huge" release this year - no 3rd edition, no Orkworld, no Shards of the Stone. Yes, there was new stuff, but nothing so huge that it threatened to overshadow the others. To me it felt as if the playing field was leveled (to a point that is). No pre-con, new release hype to get me excited this year - it was up to the salesmen and women to get me excited about their product.

I was looking for someone to really sell me - to get me excited about their product.

Ron Edwards was that someone.

Aaron and I passed by the Sorcerer booth on our way out of the great hall. It was the last booth for us that day. There wasn't a flashy banner, there wasn't any "conbait" in the booth - just some guys talking gaming and a few books on display.

I was talking to Nick Lalone (who was walking with Aaron and I)and didn't even notice the booth until I heard a man (who I later learned was Ron Edwards), say to Aaron "You looked at it!"

Apparently Ron had caught Aaron's quick glance at the book. Aaron stopped and walked over and began looking over the book and talking to Ron. I joined him to see what was up, and to hear what Ron had to say.

Ron was great. He gave us the run down on Sorcerer. He told us the concept - we asked questions on it and he had answers. I had read a few good reviews of Sorcerer, so I thought I'd see how much this Edwards guy really knew about his product.

We asked him about the conflict resolution system, about the fact that I didn't like doing a lot of math in my games - he gave us a quick demo on how it worked and showed me that math isn't a problem. His demo was fast, accurate, and backed up by actually opening the book and showing us where the rules detail the information.

Aaron asked about the exp system - Ron had answers again, explaining exactly how it worked. Not only the theory behind it, but HOW the mechanics worked.

Ron opened the book again to show us examples. He even pointed out how the book was organized. No one, and I repeat NO ONE, else at the con that we ran into had done that. Sure others had talked about the book, but he was the only person to open it and show it to us.

All of our other questions were met with the same professional, and personable answers.

Aaron and I were sold.

We each slapped down $20 and got Ron to sign our books. Ron gave us each a free copy of the Schism setting for Sorcerer, a copy of a free RPG called Soap, and a copy of the Inde Game Manifesto.

As he was writing up the receipt for Aaron and I, Ron looked up at each of us and said: "What was your name again?" He actually put my name on the receipt and called Aaron and I by name from that point on - a good tip for anyone else who wants to sell a game: call people by name whenever you can, it shows you care.

Even the others at the booth were great. Everyone introduced themselves, and they ALL shook our hands and said they were glad to talk to us. Very classy, very well done.

When we left the booth, both Aaron and I were still excited about the product, we talked about what a great sales deal it was and how friendly, personable and how much knowledge Ron showed about his product.

Then, when I got home and read Sorcerer - I knew I had made the right choice.

Thank you, Ron, for taking the time to sell you game to Aaron and I. Of all the different things we remember from GenCon, the experience at your booth is the most memorable of them all.

Thank you,


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The BlackLight Bar, home of Soap: the game of soap opera mayhem.
Now available as a $2.95 Adobe PDF (Paypal only)


Only fitting I post here on the Forge first. *smile*

Ron - thanks for the kind words earlier, even if I did block a couple of your customers once or twice - I'm not as big as hardcoremoose, but I'm not exactly small, either.

Learned a lot from all of you kind folks, and thanks to one and all for making it a most enjoyable experience. Especial thanks to Jared for the pool game from hell...

-John B

Ron Edwards

Welcome to the Forge, John.

Folks, John and Mike Holmes get the famed "last painful moments" award for helping me break down the booth and load up boxes into cars, and all that horrible stuff.

Really, guys - you have no idea how much that helped me, especially in the state of brain-fry at the end of the day and the end of the con.



The more I read, the more I wish I could have come to GenCon.  The good news is that I may actually land a job (perversely, looking more likely than clients right now) and get to come next year.
Clay Dowling - Online Campaign Planning and Management